4/18/11. Thomas Grey. Return interview with Tom Grey, Senior Advisor for the national organization, Stop Predatory Gambling. Tom has had over 20 years experience with organizing opposition to gambling across the country, at the local, state, and national levels. He states that his job has grown easier as evidence has mounted of the damage done by casinos and other forms of predatory gambling. People are growing aware that the gambling industries âhavenât been able to deliver on their promises or hide their victims,â and that this is a failed government policy.
He spoke of communities that have decided against bringing in casinos and have subsequently thrived, with vibrant downtown and waterfront areas: San Antonio, TX (the Riverwalk); Providence, RI (the downtown area); Chicago, IL (the downtown State Street area). In contrast, he pointed to cities that have brought in casinos to help create economic prosperity, but have been left with urban blight surrounding the casinos: Detroit, MI, or Niagara Falls, NY. The city of Shreveport, LA brought in riverboat gambling, planning to use the profits from gambling to finance the development of a Boardwalk for the city. A couple of weeks ago the Boardwalk went into foreclosure.
He was glad to report that the efforts of a private developer to place a casino in the Gettysburg National Park have been successfully thwarted, for the second time.
He argues that in supporting gambling, government has lost its bearings. In urging people to gamble instead of saving, investing, making their money work for them, the government is robbing citizens of their own future financial security, and setting up a further social and economic burden on the system.